Barea, Sloan first to get flop warnings
The NBA issued flopping warnings on Monday to Timberwolves guard J.J. Barea and Cavaliers guard Donald Sloan, the first two under a new policy designed to end the act. Barea, a former star at Northeastern, threw his upper body backward after contact while defending Sacramento’s Jimmer Fredette on Friday. Sloan tumbled wildly to the court after a pick set against him against Chicago on Friday. The second offense comes with a $5,000 fine, followed by $10,000 for a third, $15,000 for a fourth, and $30,000 for a fifth. Additional flops could lead to a suspension . . . Jim Durham, 65, who was the play-by-play commentator for NBA games on ESPN Radio, died at his home in Tomball, Texas. A cause of death was not announced. Durham received the 2011 Curt Gowdy Media Award from the Basketball Hall of Fame for his contributions to the sport. His last assignment was last week’s opener between the Celtics and Heat . . . Marquette sophomore guard Todd Mayo, brother of Mavericks guard O.J. Mayo, was declared academically ineligible.
Tigers’ Cabrera is choice of his peers
Tigers third baseman Miguel Cabrera beat out Pirates outfielder Andrew McCutchen and Angels rookie outfielder Mike Trout for player of the year as voted on by fellow major leaguers. Cabrera, the first Triple Crown winner in the big leagues since 1967, hit .330 with 44 homers and 139 RBIs. Retiring Braves third baseman Chipper Jones was voted Marvin Miller man of the year for excellence on and off the field. Other awards went to the Rays’ David Price and Mets’ R.A. Dickey (AL, NL outstanding pitchers); Trout and Reds third baseman Todd Frazier (AL, NL outstanding rookies); and White Sox DH Adam Dunn and Giants catcher Buster Posey (AL, NL comeback players) . . . Melky Cabrera is eligible to receive the full playoff share of $300,000 as a member of the World Series champion Giants, even though he was not a part of the team the final 1½ months, the San Francisco Chronicle reported. Cabrera tested positive for a performance-enhancing substance and was suspended for 50 games by MLB. According to player union rules, if a player’s team plays 10 games after he is eligible to be reinstated, he gets a full playoff share. The Giants played 11 games after Cabrera became eligible . . . Giving themselves another catching option with Russell Martin a free agent, the Yankees claimed Eli Whiteside off waivers from the Giants . . . The Astros hired Eduardo Perez as bench coach and Dennis Martinez as bullpen coach to complete the staff of manager Bo Porter. The Astros also announced that Tony DeFrancesco, interim manager at the end of last season, will return to his former job as manager of Triple A Oklahoma City . . . The Cardinals promoted assistant hitting coach John Mabry to hitting coach as the replacement for Mark McGwire, who appears headed to the Dodgers.
Washington State’s Wilson suspended
Washington State star receiver Marquess Wilson was suspended for an unspecified violation of team rules, and will miss Saturday’s game against No. 17 UCLA. Cougars coach Mike Leach said the punishment would last at least a week. Washington State was blown out, 49-6, at Utah on Saturday for its sixth straight loss. Leach said the effort of his players was ‘‘bordering on cowardice.’’ . . . Arkansas senior linebacker Terrell Williams, arrested for driving while intoxicated hours after a win against Tulsa on Saturday, was suspended for this week’s game at South Carolina . . . Kentucky coach Joker Phillips, who was fired Sunday, will coach the Wildcats in their final two games of the season . . . Boise State senior nose tackle Mike Atkinson will miss the rest of the season with a torn ACL . . . Maryland linebacker Demetrius Hartsfield is out for the season with a torn ACL.
Djokovic, Murray off to good starts
Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray won their opening matches at the ATP finals in London, setting up a showdown between two of the top three players in the world. The top-ranked Djokovic beat Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, 7-6 (7-4), 6-3, in Group A, after third-ranked Murray beat Tomas Berdych, 3-6, 6-3, 6-4. Djokovic and Murray will play Wednesday. The event is the season-ending tournament for the world’s top eight players. Fourth-ranked Rafael Nadal pulled out with an injury. Group B, which includes six-time champion Roger Federer, will play Tuesday.
Havre de Grace is sold for $10 million
Havre de Grace sold for $10 million at the Fasig-Tipton November sale in Lexington, Ky. The 2011 Horse of the Year from Rick Porter’s Fox Hill Farm was bought by Mandy Pope of Whisper Hill Farm . . . Brazilian police said they are investigating the possible kidnapping of the younger sister of Brazil striker Hulk in the northeastern city of Campina Grande . . . Craig Levein was fired as Scotland’s national soccer coach after three years . . . Sabres forward Thomas Vanek is returning to Buffalo after completing an 11-game stint playing for his hometown team in Graz, Austria. Vanek has not ruled out the possibility of returning to play in Europe if the NHL lockout continues . . . North Reading’s Ryan Fitzgerald scored three goals as Team USA beat Canada, 9-1, at the World Junior A Challenge hockey tournament in Yarmouth, Nova Scotia. Team USA faces Switzerland on Tuesday . . . The International Cycling Union is investigating allegations that Olympic champion Alexandre Vinokourov of Kazakhstan bribed a rival in order to win the 2010 Liege-Bastogne-Liege race . . . Jim Flick, 82, a golf instructor for more than 50 years whose clients included Tom Lehman and Jack Nicklaus, died of pancreatic cancer in Carlsbad, Calif.